Guide to Venice Restaurants & Food
Venice has limited examples of what most people
would consider to be "real" Italian food. Yes, you can easily find
spaghetti and pizza, but forget about chicken parmigiana, veal parmigiana,
ravioli, and some of the "Italian" dishes you enjoy at your local restaurant.
Even the pizza is limited -- pepperoni pizza doesn't exist here, so you'll most
likely have to settle for Margherite pizza, which is tomato sauce topped with
cheese and sliced tomatoes. The rest of the Venetian food is northern
Italian -- i.e., dishes with a continental flair, and without the meat sauces to
which we're accustomed. For an emergency fix of McDonald's food, stand
just in front St. Mark's Basilica looking at the front door, then turn left and walk to the second street and
turn right. You'll see the golden arches on a waist high sign on the left
side of the street.
The real star of the Venice food scene, in our
opinion, is the gelato, the creamy Italian ice cream made with fresh fruit.
Gelato shops are everywhere, and from our samplings, all of them appear to be
Sandwiches -- you'll see ham and cheese subs or
grinders stacked up in glass showcases in small restaurants all over the city.
Unfortunately, these showcases are not refrigerated, and you should carefully
consider whether or not you want to try these.
Grocery stores -- Venice is a small city, and the
inhabitants don't want to hop on a boat to the mainland when they need to go
grocery shopping. There are a number of small neighborhood grocery stores
in Venice, even within several blocks of St. Mark's Square. There you can
find very good prices on soft drinks, wine, cheeses, crackers, chocolates, etc.
You can lay away a stash for the evenings, or fashion your own picnic.
And, you'll pay what the locals pay.